Sunday, October 26, 2008

Photos are the Lazy Mom's Way of Filling a Blog Post

I emailed a midwife friend of mine to find out if there was anything I could do about the swelling other than water with lemon, sleeping on my left side, watermelon (which is so not in season right now), and the super-sexy stockings. Here is her answer:

The swelling is caused by lymphatic fluid leaking out of your vessels and into
your tissue. One thing that works really well is to get into a pool
for an hour or so, 3-4 times a week. The pressure (hydrostatic?) of a big
pool of water is greater than the pressure of the free lymphatic fluid in the
tissues and it forces the lymphatic fluid back into the vessels. The
vessels take it to the kidneys where it can be processed into urine and
eliminated. I guess it’s almost the same principal as pressure stockings
but on a whole body scale. You don’t have to swim. You just
hold onto the side in water up to your shoulders and let the pressure do its
thing. It’s time-consuming and impractical (unless you belong to the YMCA
or a health club) but it really works.
So, I decided to give it a try. Here is a picture of me floating in the swimming pool to relieve swelling.

After that, I decided to have my husband take my picture, because I think the baby has actually dropped (although that doesn't seem possible given how low I was carrying to start, but judge for yourself).

You miht notice, if you've been studying me closely, that I cut my hair. I donated another ponytail to Pantene Beautiful Lengths. It was two years, two weeks since I cut it, and I had another 12" to cut. So, I guess my hair grows about 6" per year. The lady at the salon was ery nervous about cutting my hair. Apparently, they do not like to cut off all the hair of pregnant women because we do things that are irrational when our faces are all puffy and we think it's a good idea, but, dude, it is so totally not. I assured her that I had been planning on cutting my hair for two years since the last time I did this. So, she cut it. But I have heard that hormones make your hair thick and gorgeous, so it would seem an awesome time to cut and donate hair. But then again, I am totally not in love with my hair. It's something to keep my head warm.
As long as I had teh camera out, I snapped a picture. Call this photo "The View of my Lap from Right Here".

And our last picture from this set is called "Use This Photo to Discourage Teen Sex and Pregnancy". Oh man, that's one hot photo. In actuality, I hadn't seem myself from that angle, uhm, ever, so this was quite illuminating. This picture is actually upside-down (note that my jeans are at the top) because of how I was holding the camera. If you look at it while standing on yoru head, it's not nearly as scary.

Photos are the Lazy

Lesson One: Don't Be Smug

Two months ago...
Me: What do you think we should name the baby?
Chuckles: Stoopio.

Last month...
Me: What do you think we should name the baby?
Chuckles: Morganda.

Me: What do you think we should name the baby?
Chuckles: Opladah. (at least, I think that's how it would be spelled.)

I have officially gone from pregnant and justfinethankyou to OhMyGod, my toes look like breakfast sausages. I have swollen. I wore super-sexy pressure stockings to bed last night (they have some writing on them. They are officially anti-embolism stockings). My wedding rings are in a little box and will be seen again in a month or so. I swelled at 36 weeks-even with Chuckles. I swelled at 36w2d this time around. Way to hold that swelling at bay, eh? I'll let you know if the ice-cold showers and pressure stockings work. Mostly, I am just resigned to the fact that I am puffing. I will mention it at my next doctor's appointment, but until then, I am just resigned. Woo woo.

I was smug thinking I'd keep my weight gain down this time and thinking that I wasn't going to swell. It's just not true. I'm a sweller. Hopefully, I will be able to keep the carpal tunnel at bay. I only have 6 days of work left (although work is totally hectic because of the Global Financial Implosion and my fill-in is "nothing but brain stem" as Mr. Long-Suffering puts it).

So, that's where I am. Puffing, cranky, napping, nesting, and very very happy to be so lucky to be here.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

I'm here feathering my nest

I guess I have hit the home stretch. Everything is moving right along.

I asked Chuckles if he would like a brother or a sister.

Me: Would you like a brother or a sister?
Chuckles: Which one is the boy?
Me: Brothers are boys, and sisters are girls.
Him: I want a boy sister.
Me: OK, good luck with that.

Chuckles has also recently taken to singing something that sounds vaguely like the Barney song.
I love you.
Hugs and kisses for you and me.
You love me.
I want hugs and kisses too.
And you are the best and I'm so good too and here are my cars, I love you, kiss me.
And so on.

I have started cleaning things. And vacuuming. Which if you know me, is quite amazing. Truly amazing. I don't vacuum. My motto should be, "I'm cool with windows but I don't do floors." It's a really good thing we have hardwood floors because you really don't need to do much with those. I also mopped some floors. And I scheduled the carpet cleaner guys for the day after Election Day.

And because I figured this flurry of cleaning was probably nesting (which I never did with Chuckles), I bought a rocking chair, cleaned curtains, rearranged all the furniture in Chuckles's room, arranged the furniture in the guest room/baby's room, decorated (mostly) the baby's room, purchased various and sundry baby items I needed in the house (infant acetaminophen, diaper ointment, petroleum jelly in squeeze tubes, etc), cleaned some more, organized the front hall closet, threw away a ton of shoes that were ripped and had holes, filed papers, and much much more. And that was Monday. Last night, I laid awake from 4 am on thinking about all the cleaning, painting, and organizing I could get done in the next three weeks. It's a sickness.

Somewhere in here, I morphed from a woman who was convinced that she would not to conceive, to one who did, to someone who thought for sure she would miscarry due to low progesterone or the bleeding, to one who stayed pregnant, to one who thought she'd start bleeding and have a premature infant thanks to the previa, to one who is pretty much beyond preemie-land, to someone who decorates nurseries sure in the knowledge that a baby is coming home. It's weird. I feel like everything I do for the new baby is like a jinx on me, but I so want to be ready because I really don't need to be at Target buying baby essentials at 4 days post-partum. I have a crib and diapers and ointments and unguents and a baby tub and clothes and every day I feel like an impostor. It's so weird. And I'm huge, so I'm really not impostering.

Small gripe: the other day I came home from work at 5:30 and discovered my husband on the couch watching TV and my son on the other couch reading books. I ran in and started heating the leftovers that were for dinner (lamb chops! whole grain pasta with homemade pesto! vegetables!). During this, my son wanted to be attached to me bodily. And my husband quips that for the 40 minutes he was home, Chuckles left him alone to watch TV. Now, I have three or ten things wrong with this scenario. 1 - You've been home for 40 minutes and haven't started dinner. 2 - You've been home for 40 minutes and haven't thrown in laundry, picked up anything, loaded or unloaded the dishwasher. 3 - You have been home for 40 minutes and did not spend it interacting with your child who has been at child care all day long. 4 - You are home right now not doing anything productive as far as I can tell and you are not helping fix dinner or entertaining the child so I can do it freely. Please give me a break. I think the heavy sigh I passive aggressively let out showed my displeasure, and then I left him the ingredients on the counter for what I wanted for dinner the next night (because I think actually figuring out what to fix is the hardest part for him).

Sometimes, Chuckles comes up to me. He's about this tall (see my hand right here). Then he proceeds to yell at my stomach something like, "HI BABY. Baby-Baby-Baby." It's supercute. I should get it on video.

Do you think I should start refering to the Baby by name when I talk about it in my home or am I good to refer to Baby as "baby"?

Global Financial Collapse makes me want to buy a new car. With 0% financing and no money down. I want the Honda Accord Cross-over but it doesn't come out until Model Year 2010. Nissan has a year's worth of Pathfinder inventories on the lot, so I could try that. They're probably buy one-get one.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

One month to go

The big event at my last doctor's appointment was that my "surgery" was scheduled. You know, the birth of my child. It's November 17th (time tbd).

In other news, I am still on pelvic rest and will be for the duration. There's no hope of the placenta moving now. And the baby is breech. And that's about it.

I only gained 1 pound in the previous week, so I feel pretty good. My food cravings are decidedly toward the unhealthy (milk shakes, rice pudding, chocolate milk, cereal, caramel, toffee), so it's good that I am not keeping that stuff in the house and only gained a pound.

I had horrible carpal tunnel from about 5 months on with Chuckles. It appeared on Thursday. That seems pretty good to me. I make it to 35 weeks and only wore my brace once. I've worn it a bit since then. This time around, it is nowhere near as bad.

With Chuckles, at 36 weeks, I took my wedding ring (and my shoes) off and didn't see them again for 3 months (ironically, it was April Fool's Day and I figured someone had to be kidding me). So far, nothing even seems tight...even by the end of the day after eating lots of salt. So far, so good. We'll see how it goes.

I only have two weeks of work left and they still haven't figured out who my replacement is. This ought to be fun. Fun, I say. Except it's not. But, that's OK. It'll be fine. I won't be there. They'll muddle through.

Product Review: Fiber Supplements

I believe I mentioned that I was encouraged to increase my already-plentiful fiber consumption after I had some south-of-the-border issues. So, now I am an EXPERT on fiber. Let's review.

I started with a corn dextrin-based fiber supplement (I bought CVS store brand. The name brand used wheat dextrin. I have no idea whether that matters).
Pros: Dissolved completely in water (not milk) and did not taste like anything.
Cons: Did not work (and really, what's the point if it doesn't work). It did cause a change in the, ummm, product that I was producing but it did not appear to be for the better (nor for the worse, neutral).

Next, I decided to try the most famous of all: Metamucil. The woman pictured on the website is clearly not constipated. Nor has she ever been constipated. In fact, I'm not sure she's ever had a bowel movement. She's just too young, non-pregnant, and perky. I tried coarse ground, unflavored (but still sweetened) Metamucil (psyllium fiber).
Pros: Works great in as little as 12 hours.
Cons: Absolutely disgusting dissolved in plain water. Do not dissolve in warm water (it not try to hide it in your oatmeal unless you'd like to throw away a really big bowl of oatmeal). Do not put the cap back on the bottle before chugging the vile liquid because the longer it sits, the more disgusting it gets. Here's the deal: get yourself about 3 ounces of ice cold tap water, add one ounce of OJ for flavor, measure in one heaping teaspoon of Metamucil and stir vigorously for 10 seconds. Chug the whole mess. Rinse the glass with a bit of water and drink that (because it sticks to the glass). Replace the cap on the Metamucil jar and fill your glass with water to let it soak overnight.

Obviously, I found the Metamucial vile (but effective), so I wanted to try something else. I bought a bottle of fiber supplement tablets (made from inulin vegetable fiber) that are about 4 times bigger than a tumes but they taste like oranges and go down easy.
Pros: They taste good. Sometimes I would have one after dinner in lieu of a cookie.
Cons: They don't work. They do have an effect. It's the same effect as the corn dextrin fiber. That effect is that it turns your excrement into rubber. It's a bizarre occurrence and not one that I'd definitely say is for the positive.

Lastly, I found the Metamucil to be a little pricey, so I bought Pharmacists' Choice unflavored (but sweetened!) psyllium fiber supplement. It's OK. It's fine ground, I guess, since it isn't as coarse as the coarse-ground Metamucil.
Pros: Low, Low Price, and it works!
Cons: It dissolves a little funny and the sugar stays in the glass (which I guess isn't a bad thing since I don't need the sugar).

Overall, I highly recommend the psyllium powders that you mix with water (or juice). And eat some raisin bran every day. And fruit. And stay away from the rubber makers.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

I'd love to blog but I am sooooo tired

Instead of anything substantive, I give you the following...

Things I love
  • Affy Tapples ('nuff said)
  • My kid (who was sleeping in bed with me, work up for 3 seconds to say, "I love you and need to give you hugs and kisses." And then, to prove it, promptly fell back asleep for, like, 11 more hours.)
  • 75% off yellow tags at the Goodwill. I got some awesome stuff. Brand new stuff from Target, used stuff, snow pants.
  • My kid who hung out in bed for an hour today playing some elaborate game with pillows while I took a nap 3 inches away. He was very quiet. He may have slept. I have no idea. I was comatose.
  • A clean car
  • Ultrasounds that show a 5 lb 2 ounce to 5 lb 14 ounce fetus wiggling about all breech in position and cute as a button. And a 3.4 cm cervix that has plenty of length left depsite the fact that I contract (a lot).
  • Chuckles's new, big boy hair cut. Same cut he's had before, just done. And he's so dang cute. Really. I'm not just saying that because I'm his mom.

Things I do not love

  • My husband is on the midnight shift. I do not like solo parenting. Am so tired.
  • Industrial accidents that (slightly) injure my husband. I am really glad that the thing that hit him got him on the arm and not somewhere important (like his head).
  • Traffic on a Saturday afternoon. It just goes against the code of What Is True, Just, and Right in This World.
  • A car that, even after I washed it, is still dirty (that shows just how dirty the car was when I started).
  • People who keep saying how big I am. Yes, yes, I know. I am enormous. I get it. And people who keep mentioning how uncomfortable I look. Ok, here's the thing...there's not much I can do about it, ok?
  • Ultrasound techs who don't show me the screen. I had to crane my neck and all just to see what I saw.
  • Contractions. I was driving home in the aforementioned Traffic (with sleeping Chuckles in the back seat) and I got a contraction that lasted from the Circle Interchange to 115th St. There was nothing I could do about it. It's not like I was going to stop on the South Side of Chicago, and it's not like I could move or walk it off, so I just sat there praying I wouldn't pee myself. Good times. Good times. I guess I have officially given up driving long distances through sketchy neighborhoods by myself.

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

This Post Rated PG-13 for Brief Nudity

It's Official.

I Am All Kinds of Huge.


  1. I tried to do a push-up today and could not as my belly hit the floor before my elbows could bend.

  2. I no longer fit in my size L maternity clothes. All of my XL clothes are sweatpants, so I don't foresee any further wardrobe dilemmas.

  3. I saw my old ob at Chuckles's school on Friday night (I see her partner now because it is MUCH easier to get an appointment with him). Anyway, OB says to me, "Oh my! You look ready to pop (or maybe she said drop...anyway...)!" I laughed and said I was only 33 weeks. And she got this horrified look on her face. I said, "It's OK. I'm on track for a 9-pounder." She agreed heartily based on how I looked, and the fact that Chuckles was over 8 lbs. And she agreed about the c-section given the potential size and the placenta previa. So, look, I got a second opinion on the medical necessity of my c-section.

  4. My boss thinks I have begun to waddle. My boss also thinks I appreciate that he noticed. Ha ha ha. That boss-man. So funny.

  5. My husband has stopped thinking that pelvic rest is a bad idea. He finds the physics daunting.

  6. Here's your proof positive.......

Friday, October 03, 2008


Well, it went from summer to Fall in 3.2 seconds. They're calling for FROST in the far-outlying areas tonight. I do not live in a far outlying area, so no frost for me, but still. I have this theory that it always snows once before Halloween and it will also always be 80 once in October. So, there you go. I remember that the first weekend in October last year was 90 degrees (we were apple picking) and the weekend before Halloween was hotter than Hades (we were at Boo At The Zoo). I felt bad for all the kids in plush costumes. So sweaty.

On to other news, another Thursday, another doctor's appointment. My blood pressure is steady at 115/60, where it has been every day of my life. My weight, however, is not so steady. It's climbing at an alarming rate now. I'm up over 30 pounds total so far. I still have up to 7 weeks to go. At the current rate, I could end up packing on 60 pounds! But I won't. You are my witnesses.

I mentioned the Braxton Hicks contractions that are so bad I think I am in labor when then come (but they do always go away with some walking). If I didn't have placenta previa, he probably would have checked my cervix. As it was, he told me to stay pregnant for 2 more weeks (as if I can control it! I told him to keep me pregnant for 4 more!) and get an ultrasound to check placental placement and cervical length, so I'm going for another ultrasound next week. I go back for another doctor visit in 10 days. My husband is scheduled to work the midnight shift next week for 11 consecutive days (this is how he is earning paid time off after the baby comes). I need to call in the cavalry because dinner, evening routine, bath, jammies, books, etc take its toll on my body. Mom, Mother-in-Law, etc will all be contacted for help picking child up from day care and bringing me dinner. I know it sounds like I have it easy, but really, I need to stay pregnant for two more weeks and I need help. If cervical length is shortening, I am going to be smacked onto bed rest next week, so I need a plan.

I watched some of the Vice-Presidential debate last night. Biden called people in Bosnia bosniaks, which is apparently a correct thing to do, but I always thought they were Bosnians. Palin was folksy, they say. She was real. Some of her personality shined through. That's nice. I'm all for authentic. Biden's a fine guy too, but I'm not so keen on the governmental intervention into my life (no taxes, boo hiss).
I'm reminded of an episode of pandering from the Simpson's.

Kang [running for President]: Abortions for all!
[crowd boos]
Very well, Abortions for none!
[crowd boos]
Abortions for some, miniature American flags for the others!
[crowd cheers and waves tiny American Flags]

Well, that's all I have for now and my formatting got all messed up, so I bid you adieu for today. Wish me a fine weekend. We have FAMILY FUN night tonight and maybe some apple picking tomorrow. And then, baked apples...mmmmm.

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Seriously, it's October

So, well, where did summer go? Oh yes, that's right, I spent my summer being pregnant, traveling, experiencing bad weather, and various and sundry other things. And now it is Fall.

Only 31 days until Halloween and Chuckles would like to be a Race Car Driver (but not Speed Racer nor Ricky Bobby). So, we bought him a helmet at the fly-by-night costume shop that sprang up in a strip mall near our home, and I've decided to let him wear his Race Car Driver pajamas that day. Now, I just need stickers from sponsors to stick to his jammies. So creative.

Since his little wallopping expedition, CHuckles has not wailed on any more kids at school. He is reminded every morning not to touch the other kids and to obey his teachers. Good times. He has defied a teacher every day since then but he comes clean when you pick him up and says, "I yelled at Miss Kelly today." Well, the honesty is a nice touch.

I'm almost 33 weeks now. Things continue to progess but I have nothing to report. Baby changes position frequently and has not gone head down (which, frankly, does not matter since the c-section will take care of that). It hurts to sit for long periods of time without shifting and fidgeting. Walking is fine. Standing is double plus un-good. A few times a week I wake up in the middle of the night convinced I am in labor but really, I just need to pee and am having contractions of a non-regular, non-productive nature.

I mentioned the mosquitoes, yes? Well, yesterday at about 6:15 am on my way to work, I drove through the cloud of a truck spraying to rid the neighborhood of said mosquitoes. I closed my vents and held my breath until I was well-passed there, but you know, I drove through a cloud of insecticide.

It's raining today. The floodwaters receded but they are rightthere at the edge of the pavement, in the backyard, just under the bridge. I really don't want a repeat of what happened before and I am sure the people's whose homes were detroyed don't want that either. I hope the rain stops soon.

The new season of Chuck is back on nbc. I watched it on streaming video at yesterday and it did not disappoint. It's not a realistic show. It's a fun comedy romp with an action angle. And there is all this unrequited I just can't shake. I love the unrequited.

I bought Chuckles some Carters pajamas at Kohl's and since it's been chilly the last few nights, he's been wearing them. He loves them and calls them his soft pants and tells me that they are as soft as his ding, which is truly high praise. Praise of the highest.

I went to Goodwill this weekend and let Chuckles pick out some books (we got 19 new books). Several of them are children's Bibles. He likes boats so he always wants the story about Noah. He also likes jungles, so he's been asking for the Garden of Eden story a lot and I have the hardest time refraining from adding baum-chicka-bow-bow when the serpent gives Eve the apple and she eats it, if you know what I mean, wink-wink. I'm a horrible person.

And in conclusion, I am a horrible person. But, I am a Libertarian and I am glad the Wall Street Bail-Out failed to pass. And I think that bankers who gave 120%, $0 down, interest only, stated income mortgages to anyone deserve what they get. And to the people who took out those obviously could not afford what you were buying, are you really that dumb? Or greedy? Then you too get what you deserve. I'm a horrible person, I know, but I've never taken out anything but a 30-year fixed rate mortgage with 20% down. And usually, I buy a house that costs half of what I could be approved to borrow. Oh, and lest you think I'm truly horrible and only enjoy the misery of others, I'll have you know that I am losing a bundle in my 401(k) every single day here (except yesterday when I made money, but not nearly as much as I lost on Monday).

Oh, and the secret to motherhood is cassroles made with a can of Cream of Mushroom soup.